Iranians in the United Arab Emirates

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Emirati Iranians
Total population
500, 000 (2015)[1]
5-8% of the UAE population[1]
800, 000+ (estimates, 2012) [2]
more than 8% of the UAE population
Regions with significant populations
Abu Dhabi · Dubai
Arabic, Persian Azerbaijani, Armenian, Kurdish, and other languages of Iran. (see Languages of Iran).
Predominately Shi'a Islam

Emirati Iranians or Emirati Persians are residents of the United Arab Emirates of Iranian national background. The community accounts for 5-8% of the country's population.


Due to the geographical proximity between Iran and the United Arab Emirates, Persians were the first major group of foreign settlers in the region, with a history dating back to the 1810s.[3] Persians who resided in the Trucial States prior to 1925 or before the formation of the union were offered the Emirati citizenship as per Article 17 of the United Arab Emirates Citizenship and Passport Law of Year 1972.[4]

The UAE is currently home to 500,000 Iranian expatriates, most of whom live in Dubai.[5] The Iranian Club in Dubai is the main social club of Iranian expatriates in the country.

The Iranian population in UAE also includes small communities of Baloch people and Khuzestani Arabs.[6]

Business and organisations[edit]

Iranian mosque in Dubai.

There are an estimated 8,000 Iranian-backed businesses in Dubai. There is an Iranian Business Council - Dubai. There is also an Iranian Hospital in Dubai.

Iran maintains a consulate-general in Dubai.

The Iranian businesses in UAE own more than $ 300 billion there.[7]


There are two notable Iranian mosques: the Iranian Mosque in Bur Dubai and the Iranian Mosque in Satwa. There is also a significant community of Baha'is.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "UAE´s population – by nationality". BQ Magazine. 12 April 2015. Archived from the original on 11 July 2015. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  2. ^ "Iranian National Organization for Civil Registration: More than 2 million Iranians live in the U.S.A and the U.A.E" (in Persian). Radio Farda. September 7, 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  3. ^ "Negotiating Change: The New Politics of the Middle East". Jeremy Jones. 2007. pp. 184–186.
  4. ^ "UAE Citizenship and Passport Law of Year 1972, Article 17". Retrieved 2018-01-23.
  5. ^ "UAE soldiers to learn Persian". 2011-04-09. Retrieved 2012-12-10.
  6. ^ Abdelkhah, Fariba. The Thousand and One Borders of Iran: Travel and Identity. Routledge. p. 9. ISBN 9781317418979.
  7. ^